Two men were killed today because they stood up for two Muslim women who were being harassed on Tri-Met by a racist. Another was injured.
They are heroes, yet their families are not only going to be faced with the pain of losing people they love, but with financial hardships from their passings.
I've started this GoFundMe to help them with costs as a result of their deaths and injuries. All donations will go to the victim's families. Hopefully the goal is just a starting point. They will certainly need more than this. And no amount of money will ever lessen their heartbreak.
I have been getting more messages than I can keep up with asking who I am and why they should trust me. I'm working a 12 hour shift today at work so it's more difficult than normal. However, I thought I would update this with some information:
1) I started this because I was looking around for somewhere to donate to the families of these heroic victims and couldn't find anywhere. I lamented this online and then thought, well, why shouldn't I just do it. So I did.
2) I am not a member of the families or a close friend. I learned I have a friend who is related to Ricky Best, but only after I started this. I have reached out to the families, but they are understandably concerned with more important things right now and most likely grieving for their terrible losses. I am patiently awaiting someone from the families to help direct the donations where they belong.
3) GoFundMe gives 30 days to indicate where the donations will go. While I didn't know exactly where they would go when I began this, I figured I would have time to figure it out. I will be transparent about where all the money goes and it will only go to the families of the victims. I just wanted to help and didn't know if it would be as successful as it has.
4) I am a restaurant owner in town who also occasionally writes for Willamette Week. You can find me on Twitter or Facebook as Nick Zukin or "extramsg". Others in the restaurant industry can vouch for my credibility as can people in the food press.
5) I have been talking with people at both GoFundMe and the Portland Mayor's Office in order to make sure that the process of distributing the funds is fully transparent and verified.
6) I am impressed and proud of our city's generosity. These guys stood up for what was right and paid the ultimate price. I'm glad we are helping their families as a community.
- Kathern Bhardwaj
- Sebastian Degens
- katara aleem
Organizer and beneficiary
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